Welcome, dear friends, to Thursday's (March 17) "American Idol" results show, or, as I prefer to call it, "That thing I'm kinda live-blogging while what I'm actually doing is swapping between NCAA Tournament basketball games."

Click through for a little March Madness...

8:00 p.m. Most of the "American Idol" Finalists didn't dream of becoming singers when they grew up. The exceptions were World's Scariest Kid Pia Toscano and Thia Megia, who turned seven yesterday. Anyway, though... "America has spoken..." But what did America say?

8:02 p.m. That is a very short skirt Jennifer Lopez is wearing. And a very well-tailored suit Ryan Seacrest is wearing. Last night, after Jacob Lusk's version of "Alone," I went over to YouTube and I dug up Carrie Underwood's formative cover of the Heart track. The funniest part of that clip wasn't Carrie's deer-in-the-headlights stare or Simon Cowell's correct projection that she'd win the whole thing. No, the funniest part of the clip is that when Ryan Seacrest comes out to talk to Carrie, he's wearing a t-shirt. Remember when Ryan wore tight t-shirts on "Idol" instead of expensive suits? I do now.

8:03 p.m. Baby picture of Lee DeWyze. He was an awkward baby.

8:03 p.m. You can still make a donation to the Red Cross. We don't make fun of such things.

8:03 p.m. Group Sing! The men begin with "Born to be Wild." I get it! Because it contains the word "born." Wait. Are they actually live tonight? It looked like Jacob Lusk missed his cue? But maybe that was just a gaffe in the pre-recorded audio track? The ladies chime in with "Born this Way." I get it! Because it contains the word "born." Also, "Born to be Wild" is from the year Paul McDonald was born, while "Born this Way" is from the year Thia Megia was born.

8:10 p.m. This week's Ford Commercial is set to "Val Kilmer"  and it's definitely better than last week's dull affair. James Durbin, for example, makes a fine Scary Movie Killer, while Karen Rodriguez and Haley Reinhart were believable as CW girls swooning over Stefano Langone. I'm still not going to go out tomorrow to buy a new Ford.

8:12 p.m. Since "American Idol" began, 250 million downloads have been generated. I have no perspective of what that means. There's a 10th Anniversary Compliation CD and that CD is under every seat in the theater. I, however, do not have a CD under my seat. Stop making me feel sad about my lack of under-seat "Idol" CD, Seacrest.

8:12 p.m. Karen can make funny noises with her throat. Scotty McCreery can wiggle his ears. Karen Rodriguez is fluent in Spanish. Thia collects quarters. Scotty and Haley both do horrible British accents. Thia and Haley both do decent Lauren Alaina impressions. Paul McDonald has a 14-year-old wiener dog. Pia has a shih itzu. Amusingly, "Idol" bleeps the "s***" in shih tzu. I blame Steven Tyler.

8:14 p.m. Heh. Irish people like to drink. And they like green. Happy St. Patrick's Day, y'all!

8:15 p.m. Time to learn a few things about our Top 12: Jacob, Lauren and Casey are the first three people called to the center of the stage. It's hard to imagine that all three of them aren't safe, but we still spend a few minutes with the judges talking about the importance of pitch. Jacob is safe. Lauren is feeling a little better today and she's also safe. And what about Casey? Well, he stands nervously as Ryan asks Steven Tyler about the goop that stars are made of. The goop is apparently a reduction made of creative juices. And Casey is also safe. Well, duh.

8:18 p.m. Time for Haley and Paul. They both deserve to be in the Bottom Three. In my recap, I predicted both would be in the Bottom Three. Haley's forced to once again say who she thinks she is and who she'd like to be. It turns out that she'd like to stay in the competition in order to sing some different things. One of them is safe. The other is in the Bottom Three. Haley is sent to the Stools of Shame. Paul is safe. 

8:25 p.m. Pitbull is in the house. I don't care. Ryan Seacrest is very impressed.

8:25 p.m. Bring on Lee DeWyze.

8:26 p.m. Usually when "Idol" veterans return to the show, they've been touring for months and they have a whole new stage confidence. That's not the case with Lee, who still looks every bit as sweaty and uncomfortable in the spotlight as he did on the show. I guess he's just keepin' it real. It's not an awful song and he isn't performing it poorly. But it's also a perfect time to check out what's happening in the Belmont-Wisconsin game...

8:28 p.m. Lee says it's great to be back. He gives his seal of approval to the new judges. He tells the Top 12 to remember that they still love music, no matter what happens to them on their journey.

8:32 p.m. JIMMER! [That will make no sense to you if you aren't also watching BYU-Wofford.]

8:33 p.m. Haley's sitting all alone in her Scarnato-esque short-shorts. Somebody needs to join her. I would, but I'm watching Florida-UCSB.

8:34 p.m. Our next center stage group is Scotty, James and Pia. They're all going to be safe, but let's spin wheels. Scotty says he isn't singing for anybody in particular, that he's singing for all the ladies. Well pandered, Scotty. Naturally, Mr. McCreery is safe. Pia looks beautiful and nervous and she's safe. "No. Yes, of course I do..." Steven says when asks if he sees any of himself in James. And, of course, James is also safe.

8:36 p.m. Stefano and Naima Adedapo are next. And we all know that Naima's gonna be in the Bottom Three. She was, in fact, my pick to go home after last night. Stefano says that he hopes to make more eye-contact in the future, singing to J-Lo in particular. "I'm beginning to have a passionate hate for the word 'pitchy,'" Naima says, vowing to have perfect pitch by the end of this. Naima in the Bottom Three. Duh.

8:38 p.m. Finally an interesting pairing as it's down to Karen and Thia. Either one of them could be in trouble. Neither one of them has anything to say, though Thia manages to circularly agree and disagree with the judges' complaints about her identity. Thia is safe. Karen is in the Bottom Three. I predicted Naima, Haley and Paul, with Karen as an alternative if Paul skates by. So that's not bad, eh?

8:45 p.m. We already have our Bottom Three, so let's watch The Black Eyed Peas sing "Just Can't Get Enough" as a tribute to Japan. Has Fergie has Botox? 

8:47 p.m. This is a good time to project that the judges aren't likely to use the Judges' Save for any member of our Bottom Three. It's my guess that the Judges' Save has Jacob Lusk's name all over it, maybe two or three weeks from now.

8:53 p.m. Another Red Cross plea.

8:53 p.m. So who's going to perform again for the judges? First we have to send somebody to safety. Naima is safe. Wow. I'm a bit surprised by that. Well, I'm not "surprised." I'm disappointed. And I'm not disappointed that Naima is safe. I still like her more than several people remaining in the competition. I'm just disappointed at my lack of clairvoyance.

8:54 p.m. Oooh. Karen Rodriguez has been voted out on "American Idol."

8:55 p.m. It's Karen's last shot and she's going with "Hero." She tears into the Spanish as the judges pretend to deliberate. The vote has to be unanimous from the judges. So it doesn't matter if J-Lo wants to save Karen. We rely on Randy to have a little common sense here. Karen really, really deserves to go home.

8:57 p.m. Karen's crying already. Randy gets the verdict: "This is not unanimous," Randy admits. They're not going to use the Save. Nice try, J-Lo!

9:00 p.m. Farewell, Karen. Not much I can add to this. Karen's position was always precarious, because she was trying aggressively to tap into a market that had never been effectively mined on "Idol" before. If Karen was going to go out there and so prominently tout herself as the Latina Idol and that was gonna be the sole foundation of her presence on the show, she had to nail it every week. She couldn't provide any reason for mainstream voters to abandon her. Instead, Karen delivered two straight poor performances. That's a pretty easy formula for elimination.

 

So, did the right person go home? Was it the correct Bottom Three?